Britney Spears apologizes for speaking her truth in The Woman In Me

Britney Spears; Justin Timberlake
Britney Spears; Justin Timberlake
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Britney Spears continues to prove that she’s one of the least selfish famous people to ever exist, even though, after all she’s been through, a little righteous anger would be more than justified. On Sunday, the “Toxic” singer once again reiterated that the revelations in her (mostly) tell-all memoir The Woman In Me were for catharsis purposes only, and not meant to call anyone out.

“I wanna apologize for some of the things I wrote about in my book. If I offended any of the people I genuinely care about I am deeply sorry,” she wrote in an Instagram caption Sunday evening before making her account private. (Anyone previously following Spears can still see her posts.) The post features a video of Spears’ ex-boyfriend Justin Timberlake playing a medley of his songs on children’s instruments with Jimmy Fallon and The Roots, so the “people” or person she’s talking about is strongly implied. “I also wanted to say I am in love with Justin Timberlake’s new song ‘Selfish’... It is soo good and how come every time I see Justin and Jimmy together I laugh so hard ???” she continued. “Ps ‘Sanctified’ is wow too.”

Despite the pop star’s pleas to the contrary (she also posted a long note back in October stating that the book was meant as “closure” for her and not intended to offend), Spears’ fans have reasons to hate Timberlake. Beyond his infamously gross behavior in the press around the time of their breakup, the former *NSYNC singer didn’t exactly come off well under Britney’s pen. In the memoir, Spears reveals that Timberlake convinced her to get an abortion while they were dating, a decision she calls “one of the most agonizing things I have ever experienced in my life.” She also includes a number of other unflattering anecdotes about her ex, notably one in which she claims that Timberlake switched into a cringy accent when they ran into fellow artist Ginuwine on the street. (Ginuwine has since denied Spears’ account.)

So why is Spears apologizing for (but notably, not retracting) all of this now? We can’t know for sure, but it almost definitely has something to do with the fact that last week, her fan army continuously streamed a decade-old Femme Fatale bonus track called “Selfish” to knock Timberlake’s new release of the same name—the leading single from his upcoming album Everything I Thought It Was—out of the charts. While Britney clearly just wants (and deserves!) her peace after all the time, this writer can’t say she blames whoever thought of this pretty brilliant gag. Even if they don’t repeat the bit when Timberlake’s full album drops, it doesn’t seem like it will make all that much of a difference. The songs simply aren’t that good.